The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has urged the Federal Government to recover the more than 40 billion Naira so far received by ex-governors currently serving as senators and ministers.
The organization expressed concern that many serving senators and ministers were receiving salaries and life pensions running into billions of Naira from states that were currently unwilling or unable to pay workers’ salaries, and that double emolument and large severance benefits for former governors now serving public officials constituted a blatant betrayal of public trust.
According to SERAP, those who currently receive double emoluments and large severance benefits from their states include:
1. Dr. Bukola Saraki (Kwara);
2. Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso (Kano);
3. Kabiru Gaya (Kano);
4. Godswill Akpabio (Akwa Ibom);
5. Theodore Orji (Abia);
6. Abdullahi Adamu (Nasarawa);
7. Sam Egwu (Ebonyi);
8. Shaaba Lafiagi (Kwara);
9. Joshua Dariye (Plateau),;
10. Jonah Jang (Plateau);
11. Ahmed Sani Yarima (Zamfara);
12. Danjuma Goje (Gombe);
13. Bukar Abba Ibrahim (Yobe);
14. Adamu Aliero (Kebbi);
15. George Akume (Benue);
16. Ms Biodun Olujimi (Ekiti);
17. Enyinaya Harcourt Abaribe (Abia);
18. Rotimi Amaechi (Rivers),
19. Kayode Fayemi (Ekiti);
20. Chris Ngige (Anambra); and
21. Babatunde Fashola (Lagos).
SERAP urged the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, to institute legal action to recover the money from the ex-governors.
The group said:
“SERAP is concerned that several serving senators and ministers are receiving salaries and life pensions running into billions of naira from states that are currently unwilling or unable to pay their workers’ salaries. Public office is a public trust, and as such, citizens depend upon their governors, senators and ministers to act in the public interest, not for their own or another’s profit or benefit.”
“Under the UN Convention against Corruption to which Nigeria is a state party, it is forbidden for any public official to engage in self-dealing, and place him/herself in a position of conflicting interests, and to hold incompatible functions or illicitly engage in providing to him/herself emoluments deemed unacceptable under international law. This is a clear case of the former governors placing their private or personal interests over and above their entrusted public functions, and unduly influencing the level of benefits they receive.”
“SERAP argues that taking advantage of entrusted public offices and positions to enact laws to grant double emoluments and large severance benefits to serving public officials amounts to not only an abuse of office but also incorrect, dishonourable and improper performance of public functions, as per the provisions of paragraph 2 of article 8 of the convention.”
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